356. Pnoepyga squamata.
The Scaly-breasted Wren.
Microura squamata, Gould, Icon. Av. pl. v (1837). Tesia albiventer, Hodgs. J. A. S. B. vi, p. 102 (1837). Tesia rufiventer, Hodgs. J. A. S. B. vi, p. 102 (1837). Pnoepyga unicolor, Hodgs. P. Z. S. 1845, p. 25. Pnoepyga squamata (Gould), Blyth, Cat. p. 179; Horsf. & M. Cat. i, p. 180; Jerd. B. I. i, p. 488; Stoliczka, J. A. S. B. xxxvii, pt. ii, p. 32 ; Godw.-Aust. J. A. S. B. xxxix, pt. ii, p. 101; Blanf. J. A. S. B. xli, pt. ii, pp. 55, 160; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 234; Hume. Cat. no. 329. Pnoepyga albiventris (Hodgs.), Sharpe, Cat. B. M. vi, p. 302; Oates, B. B. i, p. 152; id. in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. i, p. 223.
The Scaly-breasted Hill-Wren, Jerd.; Marchok-bong, Lepch.
Coloration. Male. Forehead and the sides of the head and neck rich brown with bright fulvous shaft-streaks ; the whole upper plumage and the lesser wing-coverts also rich brown with a fulvous drop on each feather, the drops becoming bars on the rump and upper tail-coverts; each feather also narrowly edged with black; wings, median and greater coverts brown, the outer webs broadly edged with chestnut-brown ; chin and throat white margined with brown ; breast and the middle of the abdomen white, each feather with a large black centre and a narrow black margin ; sides of the abdomen and flanks fulvous, marked in a similar manner to the breast.
Female. Similar to the male, but the whole of the lower plumage bright fulvous, every part except the chin and throat being marked with black as in the male.
The young have the whole upper plumage and the wings rich rufous-brown and the lower parts dusky brown ; no spots whatever. In this state they are the P. concolor of Hodgs. MS.
Legs fleshy brown ; bill dusky brown above, fleshy at the base beneath; iris brown (Jerdon).
Length about 4 ; tail 6; wing 2.3 ; tarsus 1; bill from gape .65.
Distribution. The Himalayas from the Sutlej valley to Sikhim, where this Wren occurs at considerable elevations. It has also been found in the Khasi hills and near Bhamo. The birds procured by Wardlaw Ramsay in Karennee, and identified by Lord Walden with the present species, are, I find on examination of the skins, P. pusilla, the next species.
Habits, &c. Constructs a small nest of moss in May on the trunk of a tree not far from the ground, or other similar locality. The eggs, three in number, are pure white and measure about .75 by .55.